Follow by Email

Saturday, 25 February 2017

Therapeutic and Restorative Power of Art; Healing Music

"Fine art is good medicine", from Christie's

"Sydell Miller, Cleveland Clinic and the restorative power of art - With a collection of more than 6,000 works, Cleveland Clinic has long advocated ‘fine art is good medicine’. In May it will benefit from the sale of Mrs. Sydell Miller’s remarkable gift — including works by Chagall, Picasso and Lichtenstein"

Arts in Hospital, Dorset County Hospital -

"Arts in Hospital is a small, charitable organisation based at Dorset County Hospital. We aim to enhance the healing environment, raise patients' spirits and give pleasure to all who are concerned
wi​​​th their welfare. ​Our core objectives are to support patients and staff through therapeutic art projects that have medical and social benefit, engage the wider community on creative projects based on health and well-being outcomes like health promotion, programme temporary exhibitions/maintain a permanent collection of life affirming artwork shown throughout the hospital and satellite facilities to create a healing environment".

The healing power of demotic music, Neos Kosmos

Q. "There is an almost mystical, 'healing' purpose to this music. What kind of wounds would it heal today?"

Chris King:"I think the curative, calming, 'healing' function of this music could heal any number of spiritual or psychological injuries. It has been powerful medicine for thousands of years. For instance, the playing of the traditional mirologi at the beginning and at the end (especially the end) demonstrates the kind of awesome power of this music to those who listen deeply, who know what to listen for. When I hear a mirologi or a skaros played with the right touch, I feel an unwinding within myself, as if the bad kinks and knots and heartbreaks are rearranged, put in proper order, healed. But I don't think that this reaction is too rare: most people, if they allow themselves to be healed, will feel what the music has to offer".

Κίτσος Χαρισιάδης-Μοιρολόι αρβανίτικο (1928)


Chris and Yiannis

On Yiannis Chaldoupis and music therapy - "He also plays the miroloi, the deep lament for the departed, with great intensity. Playing the miroloi is the ultimate kind of therapy" (from my interview with Yianni).

Η ζωή αρχίζει

To Meraki Deropolitisa

Rock Therapy, Johnny Burnette, Rock 'n' Roll Trio

Didgeridoo Sound Therapy and Sound Healing

Didgeridoo Sound Healing

Didgeridoo, Ritual Origins and Playing Techniques, Dirk Schellberg

Part 3 of this book is on "The Didgeridoo as a Therapeutic Instrument", on healing with a didgeridoo, and music therapy.

The Life Energy in Music, Dr. John Diamond

Jazz for the Gym

When all else fails: Didgeridoo healing in nature (YouTube)

The Epirot klarino, rock 'n' roll and honking saxophones, or the Australian Aboriginal didgeridoo?

Some may prefer listening to Mozart, Bach's cello sonatas, or Beethoven's last string quartets...

It could depend on the diagnosis, the individual, the culture and the condition. Or is it the nature of the instruments and the holistic effect of their sound vibrations?

Musical Education

"I put my ear to the wall and listened".
(D. Shostakovich, 1927)

The unborn baby absorbs the soundwaves,
The deepest notes of Shostakovitch,
Along with heartbeat, the body's sounds.
The pregnant cellist counts the time,
1,2,3,4. Four months more.
Wall of the womb, wall of the belly.
The cello rests tight against the stomach.
They practise each night, the String Quartet.
They practise each day, they pluck and bow.

How they resonate, reverberate,
The deepest notes of Shostakovitch.

The baby listens, with ear to wall.


Music may not cure, but it can console. A very sick friend wrote to me three weeks before he died:

"I listen to music a lot, especially requiems (Fauré's is one of my favourites), Mahler's symphonies and Stravinski's Rite of Spring (my favourite of all time)".


More specialised links, for those interested in exploring the topics:

Icons - "Some icons…can be used as 'projectors', which radiate the subtle energy that induces both physical and spiritual healing".

Mount Athos, the Vatopedi Icon, Panagia Pantanassa

Music and Alzheimers

Music Therapy For Dementia: Awakening Memories in Alzheimer’s Patients

The Power of Music - Henry Wakes Up! YouTube

A friend has reminded me of  William Congreve's lines from The Mourning Bride, 1697:

"Musick has Charms to sooth a savage Breast,
 To soften Rocks, or bend a knotted Oak".

Comment, The Uses and Functions (of music), by Bruno Nettl

The Study of Ethnomusicology: Thirty-Three Discussions, page 260

RESEARCH ON MUSIC AND HEALING IN ETHNOMUSICOLOGY AND MUSIC THERAPY May May Chiang, 2008 (pdf) - This thesis examines current developments in the research and discourse on music and healing

No comments:

Post a Comment